Monday, July 13, 2020

A Monday Moment- "Remember When You Wanted What You Currently Have?"

“Remember when you wanted what you currently have?” - Unknown

I remember when I was young, I would always add the ½ to my age.  Instead of saying I was 15, I would say I was 15 ½.  Adding that ½, in my mind, got me just that much closer to be able to date and drive.   I was always looking toward the next life milestone and once I got there, I was on to the next.

I realized this was a pattern that I would follow into adulthood.  Of course I quit adding the ½ to my age years ago—for obvious reasons.  But the habit of planning my next goal while in the midst of meeting the previous one continued.

Restless, bored and in need of constant movement, I never stopped long enough to enjoy what I earned or achieved.  It was, “What’s Next?”

On paper it seems impressive. I checked off each milestone or goal according to the plan that I created in my mind, but allowed little time to celebrate or be in the moment.   Some would say I was determined, but the reality is—I feared being still.

We live in a society of keep up, or be left behind.  How can we know how to be still when we live in a world that demands instant gratification, quick response and access to the next best thing as soon as we got the last best thing?

The reality is that most of us are incapable of being still without distractions.

I did a little experiment the other day to test this theory.  I purposely left my cell phone at home while I ran down to the neighborhood grocery store.  After I completed my socially distant shopping, I got into line behind two other shoppers at the check-out counter.  It took me about 15 seconds before I started to rummage through my purse looking for my purposely left behind cell phone.

Am I alone in this?

I was thirty-six years old when I got my first cell phone and I can’t stand in line for 10 minutes without reaching for it?  I might have even started to twitch a little…

COVID-19 and its shelter-in-place mandate forced all of us to slow down and be still at times.  This has been incredibly difficult for a society that is fast-pace driven.  In fact, depression and anxiety has skyrocketed since the pandemic.

So, why is it Important to be still?

It’s important because it allows us time to be quiet in our thoughts and in our bodies.  That quiet connects us to what is underneath all that busy work and helps us to identify stressors in our lives or reflect on our accomplishments.   It allows us to experience peace.

The why is simple—the how is what is going to take a little more mindfulness.  How do we slow our minds down and experience living in the moment when everything around us is turned up?

Take Baby Steps- It’s hard to make a hard break, so take it slow.   Everyone can carve out five minutes a day to sit alone in a quiet space without any distractions, right?  This will be hard for me as well. Sitting still for me usually involves watching television while I fold clothes.  But, I’m going to give it a try. It also doesn’t mean you have to pull out any yoga moves or Om chanting.  It just means being still in a place with no distractions.

Okay, I carve out five minutes to be still. Then what?

Be Still with Intention- Pay attention to what is happening around you.  Visualize your life in that moment and also the lives of those around you.  Paint the picture in your mind of what is happening now.  Not yesterday.  Not tomorrow.  Now.  By paying attention and acknowledging the present, you are able to uncover the good and the bad of what you might be unintentionally or purposefully avoiding.  This allows you to experience the joy-filled moments that you might have overlooked.  At the same time, it may allow you to deal with some issues you’ve tried to avoid.

Let’s take back control of our mind.  Let’s use it to contemplate, listen and observe what’s inside our hearts.  Let’s use it to connect with the essence of who we really are and allow for us to savor those triumphed moments and moments of peace.

Let's embrace Mondays, and everyday, with excitement.  We will do it together, each Monday —for a moment. 


  1. This is great! Yes, I was always used to going, going, going, and now it feels like my whole world changed. It's been a rollercoaster ride for me just to be still.

    1. Rollercoaster is the perfect definition. Things were looking up, but they just went down again....


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